DATE PALM PROJECT NEAR BASRA, IRAQ, 6 NOVEMBER 2006 [Allocated Title]
Date palm cultivation project in southern Iraq, being supported by Multi-National Troops as part of the reconstruction efforts of Operation Sinbad.
Night shots of Danish troops and their vehicles, followed by top cover shots from a Piranha armoured vehicle in convoy with other vehicles in rural areas of southern Iraq. They park up by groves of date palms and keep watch. Iraqi civilians work in a cultivated and irrigated area where new groves of date palms are being planted. General views of the large cultivated area with its irrigation channels. Merlin helicopter lands nearby and a group of local VIPs disembark accompanied by British soldiers to view progress. They are welcomed at an open tent being used as a refreshment area. They are welcomed in Arabic by local sheikh, followed by an address (in English) by Rosalind Marsland, the British Consul General in Basra accompanied by Ghali Najem, head of the Provincial Reconstruction Development Committee (PRDC). She talks with local growers, and later ceremonially plants a date palm. Interview with Ms Marsland about the importance of the project, including stimulating the agricultural equality and providing jobs; Ghali Najem and sheikh are also interviewed. Sheikh plants a date palm. Workers with shovels walk between the irrigation channels (staged for the camera).